News release

New Chair Appointed to Forestry Innovation Transition Trust

Inclusive Economic Growth Minister Labi Kousoulis has appointed former deputy minister Rosalind Penfound as the new chair of the Forestry Innovation Transition Trust.

Ms. Penfound replaces Sandra McKenzie, who has resigned to focus on her business.

“I want to thank Ms. McKenzie for her work to help advance the transition and development of the forestry sector towards a sustainable future through innovation,” said Mr. Kousoulis. “We are fortunate to be able to tap into the experience and knowledge of Ms. Penfound to continue the work of providing new inclusive economic growth opportunities in forestry.”

Ms. Penfound is a values-based senior leader with decades of experience in public service. She has spent the last seven years at the Nova Scotia Community College as vice-president, organizational development.

She also served for more than nine years as a deputy minister in several provincial government departments.

The Forestry Innovation Transition Trust, established in March 2020, is a $50 million fund helping to bring innovation to the Nova Scotia forestry sector.

The trust focuses on accelerating new opportunities within the sector to enhance environmental, social and economic values and the adoption of new ecological forestry practices.

The fund can be used by companies, organizations or post-secondary institutions to bring innovation to the forestry and biological resources sector.


I am looking forward to taking on the role and getting to see some of the diverse and innovative projects from Nova Scotia businesses that will help take this sector into a strong, sustainable future. Rosalind Penfound, trustee and chair, Forestry Innovation Transition Trust

It has been a great pleasure to serve as chair on this board. I send a heartfelt thanks to my former fellow trustees and wish them every success in this important work. I plan to support Ms. Penfound through the transition. Sandra McKenzie, former trustee and chair, Forestry Innovation Transition Trust

Quick Facts:

  • the other trustees are Douglas Hall and David Saxton
  • five projects have been announced to date, totalling more than $4.1 million
  • the trust will issue three calls for proposals in the 2021-22 fiscal year; the first round was held in April and closes today
  • the fund will be available until March 31, 2025, or until the funds have been spent

Additional Resources:

Government’s forestry sector support website:

More information about the Nova Scotia Forestry Innovation Trust is available at: